TrekkingThomas 1982-85

A brief description on how you were bitten by the letterbox bug

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TrekkingThomas 1982-85

Post by TrekkingThomas »

Hi everyone,

I was a fanatically keen letterboxer between 82 and 85, when I left Devon for University.

I started going onto Dartmoor in 1981, due to Ten Tors and in 1982, as part of a school "Activities Day", I got the chance to go "Letterboxing". We went to the old disused railway west of Princetown, around Foggin Tor Quarry.

In 1983, I had started working as a delivery boy for a chemist shop in Exeter and as part of the second "Activities Day" I asked the staff of the shop to sponsor me. When I showed up at the shop with a dozen or so stamps and demanded 10p each (or whatever they've sponsored me for), of the staff couldn't believe it. He didn't mind paying up, he just couldn't believe that there was a hidden treasure trove of boxes, just waiting to be found.
He asked me if I would take him and show him, so the following Sunday, I went with him and his son, back to the area west of Fernworthy Forest, were I'd been the previous weekend, and revisited all the boxes with him.

This was the start of a two year friendship (before I left for university) in which the three of us went onto Dartmoor almost every Sunday. We would typically find 5 - 10 boxes and so all 3 of us joined the 100 club in 1983 (ish). In those days that was quite a big deal as there were only about 200 boxes in total and getting hold of clues was pretty hard.

At university I took up rock climbing and that hobby took me all over the country and although my climbing friends were never particularly complimentary about Dartmoor, it has always been a very special place for me. Back in 1985 I could name almost every tor just from a picture. Even today, whenever I see a picture it always drives me mad when I see a picture that doesn't have a caption saying where it is.
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